We often speak about decarbonizing our economies. We are increasing the amount of Energy from renewable sources, we are developing better recycling systems, we invest in environmental services and so on.
However, the trickiest part of decarbonizing our economy is that we are carrying on the transition to a low-carbon or carbon free economy thanks to our transportation system, which undoubtedly is not carbon free.
Total new-vehicle sales were 84 million last year, but Navigant suggests that annual sales could soar to 127 million by 2035–bringing the global vehicle total to 2 billion or more.
As noted by Green Car Congress, just 2.5 percent of those will be battery electric, plug-in hybrid, or fuel-cell vehicles–the rest will run on gasoline or diesel fuel–according to the firm.
Another 8 percent will be hybrid-electric or natural-gas powered, and Navigant expects that fully 45 percent of all vehicles in use in 2035 will have start-stop systems fitted.
Rough estimates, but one data is sure: our transportation system tremendously depends on fossil fuel and it will for the future.
How can we effectively solve this problem? Many will argue that electric cars sales are soaring and that by 2020 they will cost as much as conventional cars, which will help the transition. Moreover, with huge investment in sustainable public transports we will definitely tackle the problem of our cities.
However, this approach is wrong! Incrementing the number of green vehicles on the streets will not solve the problems of traditional transport, yet it will make it better!
It is time to move away from incrementalism practices and redesign from scratches the way we think about transports. Cities, highway, roads are all built to meet the demands of the conventional system. We must therefore redesign the way we build cities, the way we think about public transport.
Some cities already are doing something about it, here you can find a list of car free cities https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_car-free_places.
If you would like to share any idea about this topic just do it!
Ultimately, I’d like to qoute Monica Araya, founder and director of Costa Rica Limpia (Spanish for “clean”), a citizen group that promotes clean energy, about this topic:”In our country, nearly 100% of our electricity generation comes from renewables. Now it’s time to pioneer a vision for a country without fossil fuels. This means embracing a different mobility model so that our cars, buses and trains are powered with our own clean electricity, instead of oil and gas. We also need to invest in collective electric mobility and walkable streets in cities. Why accept polluting cars and traffic jams as normal? If we succeed in changing our mobility, our country could become the first emerging economy to abolish fossil fuels altogether.”